Georg Friedrich Händel, Germanico

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When the young George Frideric Handel travelled to Italy in the summer of 1706, he had already written four German operas for the Gänsemarkt opera house in Hamburg. South of the Alps, he went on to stage his Rodrigo in Florence in the summer of 1707, and then his Agrippina in Venice at the end of 1709 / beginning of 1710. Agrippina is generally regarded as the work with which he achieved the breakthrough to his Baroque opera style that then became popular all over Europe.

Now a major work attributed to Handel has been added to this important chapter in music history. In 2007, the conductor and musicologist Ottaviano Tenerani had the good fortune to come across a complete copy of a hitherto unknown opera, Germanico, in an Italian library. In all likelihood, this could be the very first opera with an Italian libretto to come from the pen of the great Baroque composer. Germanico, which dates from 1706, is a sensational addition to the repertoire, and is heard here in its world première recording.

The double CD, a few months after its release, it was reviewed by newspapers and magazines as “a worldwide success.” It got awards in France (Muse d’Or), UK (record of the month of October 2011 for BBC Music Magazine, “Awards Issue 2011″ on Gramophone), Germany (CD 5 Stars prize for the Financial Times Deutschland, CD of the week on NDR –, Italy (CD 5 Stars prize on Classic Voice, record of the month for Sat Guide).



Music: Georg Friedrich Händel (Attr.)
Libretto: anonimo/anonymously/anonime


su strumenti originali – on authentic instruments
mit Originalinstrumenten – sur instruments originaux

Ottaviano Tenerani, director

Germanico, roman commander – Sara Mingardo
Agrippina, Germanico’s wife – Maria Grazia Schiavo
Antonia, Germanico’s mother – Laura Cherici
Lucio, roman consul– Franco Fagioli
Celio, roman consul – Magnus Staveland
Cesare, Tiberio Imperatore di Roma – Sergio Foresti


Miho Kamiya, Santina Tomasello, Patrizia Vaccari

Maria Rosaria Rossini, Lucia Sciannimanico, Nadia Sturlese

Stefano Baldi, Luciano Bonci, Valerio Sirotti

Diego Barretta, Enrico Rotoli, Marcello Vargetto

Maestro del coro: Paolo Biancalana



Tromba (Trumpet/Trompete/Trompettes):

Luca Marzana
Tromba naturale copia da J.L. Ehe II of Nurnberg (ca 1700) – Stephen Keavy (1990)

Manolo Nardi
Tromba naturale copia da J.L. Ehe II of Nurnberg, (ca 1700) – Cristian Bosc (2010)

Oboe (Hautbois):

Martino Noferi
Oboe copia da Jakob Denner, (ca 1710) – Toshi Hasegawa (2007)

Marco Del Cittadino
Oboe copia da Jakob Denner, (ca 1710) – Alberto Ponchio (2008)

Fagotto (Bassoon/Fagott/Basson)

Alberto Guerra
Fagotto T. Prudent “père”  Paris 1750 ca

Violino I (Violin I)

Stefano Barneschi
Violino Jaques Boquay, Paris 1719

Violino II (Violin II)

Chiara Zanisi
Violino Aegidius Klotz, 1750

Viola (Alto)

Gianni Maraldi
Viola Stefano Scarampella, Mantova 1902


Jean-Marie Quint
Violoncello Peter Wamsley, London 1735

Contrabbasso (Double bass/Kontrabaß/Contrebassse)

Davide Nava
Contrabbasso copia da G. B. Rogeri 1690 – Giuseppe Cazzaniga (2004)

Viola da gamba

Cristiano Contadin
Viola da gamba basso 6 corde, Anonimo italiano prima metà del XVIII sec.

Noelia Reverte Reche
Viola da gamba basso 6 corde copia da Jakob Stainer 1671 – Marcos Nuñes (2007)

Tiorba, Arciliuto e Chitarra barocca (Theorbo, Archlute & Baroque Guitar)

Michele Pasotti
Tiorba copia da Vendelio Venere 1616 – Giuseppe Tumiati (2002)
Chitarra copia da Anonimo (sec XVII) – Anna Radice (2002)
Arciliuto copia da Anonimo – Jacob van de Geest (1974)

Clavicembalo (Harpsichord/Cembalo/Clavecin)

Ottaviano Tenerani
Clavicembalo italiano copia da Anonimo Italia settentrionale
seconda metà del XVII sec. – Ijsbrand van Woerden (1980)


“With Sara Mingardo outstanding as Germanicus, and Franco Fagioli and the superb young Norwegian tenor Magnus Staveland as Roman consuls, the discs are worth acquiring for baroque-opera fans”
The Sunday Times – 4th September 2011

“If the discovery of Germanico marks a career boost for Tenerani, he has repaid the favour in this stylishly executed performance…Laura Cherici brings warmth to Antonia’s ‘Sorti piu belle’, harmonising sweetly with Maria Grazia Schiavo’s Agrippina and Sara Mingardo’s soulful Germanico in the exquisite trio ‘Mia bella, mi parto’. By Handel or not, this trio and the dazzling violin arpeggios [in ‘Dopo cento anni’] make Germanico required listening.”
BBC Music Magazine Award – October 2011 ★★★★★


“Whether Germanico is by Handel or not…it is certainly worth hearing…Sara Mingardo is glorious here with her sappy contralto and triumphal bravura…Tenerani is a brilliant musician and he brings this music to life with a verve and expressive richness that suggests he certainly believes that Handel, or a composer of equal genius, had written Germanico.”
International Records Review – September 2011


“there is a succession of short arias dispatched masterfully by Sara Mingardo, Maria Grazia Schiavo and Laura Cherici; these all feature finely crafted ritornellos and an attractive variety of instrumental writing…Germanico offers some enjoyable musical merits.”
Gramophone Awards Issue 2011

Il Rossignolo: Italian style on original instruments
Financial Times Deutschland  ★★★★★


Il Rossignolo makes dazzling entrance and crowned with success in the production of complete works; … I look forward to new recordings …
Muse d’or – Muse Baroque


Il Rossignolo recorded for Sony / Deutsche Harmonia Mundi with a terrific voice cast led by Sara Mingardo a double CD that within a few months is a worldwide successful, awarded in France, England, Germany.
La Repubblica


Nearly 80 minutes of music at its best is in front of us, with everything that distinguishes Handel: The Rossignolo … an excellent ensemble of stars.
NDR – CD of the week


Listen and enjoy these 87 minutes and 46 seconds of wonderful baroque ensemble …Il Rossignolo! This applies to the registration of Tenerani, who leads his extraordinary and passionate team of 14 instrumentalists from the harpsichord!


A glittering CD … a ‘must’ for connoisseurs and the merely curious.
SAT GUIDE – CD of the month